News Archives - Earth Charter

Radio Program in Spain broadcasts the Earth Charter

Zero Emission, the program from Spain´s International radio, which is the only program in Spanish dedicated to sustainability, disseminates the Earth Charter in its regular transmissions. The director of the program, Ricardo Fraguas Poole, shares his experience in infusing the values and principles of the Earth Charter in its transmissions.

THE EARTH CHARTER AND JOHN LENNON´S ¨IMAGINE¨ FUSED ON ZERO EMISSION IN SPAIN´S INTERNATIONAL RADIO

By: Ricardo Fraguas Poole, Director of Zero Emission

EMISIÓN CERO RADIO INTERNACIONAL DE ESPAÑADear friends of The Earth Charter,

It is with great emotion, pride, and satisfaction that we are able to share with all of you that the message of the Earth Charter represents our daily Creed at ZERO EMISSION, Spain´s International Radio program dedicated to the diffuse and promotion of Sustainability.

We cannot find a better way to begin our program than to reaffirm ourselves in the declaration of wills and intentions, providentially defined and expressed in the preamble of the Charter.

“We are one human family, with a common destiny.” “We live moments of privilege, to be able to govern with right our present and our future”. “Respect and defense of nature, Universal Human Rights, economic justice and the culture of Peace”.

I am continuously thrilled every day, over and over again, by publicly diffusing these words, which fill our existence with meaning.

This is something I do with the intention of helping us to remember and to assume the privilege of exercising the genuine and sincere act of generous responsibility, of caring for one another, and of preserving the natural environment that gives us life.

We infuse each program in ZERO EMISSION, which I invite you to please consider as yours, the feelings and the values of the Earth Charter, along with the poem and song of John Lennon, “Imagine¨; we confirm that yes, we are dreamers. We believe and we know that we can make a better world for more people. We are not alone in this task. We are moving along. That each day we become more and more, and that we are succeeding in this task.

I am also pleased to share with all of EQUIPO DE EMISIÓN CERO1you the celebration of our first year of live transmissions as the only program in Spanish dedicated to the diffuse and promotion of Sustainability.  Our audience includes five continents; they tune in through devices connected to the Internet, in Podcast version, and through frequencies in the associated stations of Mexico, Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, the United States, and Spain.

On ZERO EMISSION we promote the decarbonization of industry and transport and support the actions and initiatives of the United Nations for sustainable development; as well as movements such as divestment, driven by our fellow media group The Guardian and Bill Mckibben.

You can find access and free downloading of all the programs issued since October 2016 up to date in: http://www.radiointernacional.es/programas/emision-cero/

We hope and wish that all those who promote and defend the Earth Charter can participate in our program with your information and actions. As for us, we will continue to enjoy to the maximum our informative work on Sustainability, in which we believe in.

Congratulations on your work.

-Ricardo Fraguas Poole, Director of Emission Zero.

 

 

Continue Reading

Earth Charter class on Education and Values in The Netherlands

Netherlands photo 1Earth Charter the Netherlands collaborated with NIVOZ, a think-tank on education, to hold the Earth Charter Masterclass from 29-30 May, imparted by Professor Sam Crowell, Earth Charter Education Center faculty.

NIVOZ has been advocating, for several years, for the needs of children in education, and the consequences of those needs for the teachers educating them. NIVOZ and Earth Charter the Netherlands were very pleased to have Sam Crowell impart this two-day masterclass. He also offered a public lecture on education and a dialogue with Nivoz staff members.

The Masterclass was attended by 15 participants, who engaged into a dialogue around the WHY of education based on the concept of “Emergent Teaching”, the topic of an inspirational book Professor Crowell wrote.

The social and ecological imperatives of our time, together with the Earth Charter values, were integrated into the class discussions, which lead to curricular questions such as: ¨What kind of person do I want to become?¨, and ¨what kind of world do I want to live in?¨

One of the participants of the Masterclass stated: “Sam Crowell Course photo 2reminded me of the true purpose of education. Sam made us realize that in education, certain things can be anticipated, but the unique nature of each individual student and class is far from predictable. If these moments are given the space to unfold, the results are often transformative(…)”

This Masterclass was offered for the first time in The Netherlands on October 2014; however, Professor Sam Crowell has been co-facilitating this class with Earth Charter Executive Director, Mirian Vilela, since the Earth Charter Center for Education for Sustainable Development at the University for Peace, Costa Rica, was inaugurated in 2013.

Education, Ethics, & Values for Sustainability: Transformative Teaching and Learning with the Earth Charter will be imparted again at the Earth Charter Center for ESD in Costa Rica on July 2018.

Click here for more information.

 

 

Continue Reading

The city of Victoria in Canada endorsers the Earth Charter

By: Earth Charter Friends of CanadaEC Canada logo

The City of Victoria, in British Columbia, Canada, has endorsed the Earth Charter.

Victoria Endorsement 1The endorsement was a result of democratic and collaborative processes between the Faith in Action Committee and Councillors of the City of Victoria, with strong support from the community. The process took place over several months and is an inspiring example of what can happen when a small group of people choose to act.

Faith in Action Committee organized campaigns to raise Victoria Endorsement 2awareness and support for the Earth Charter. An information session with Elizabeth May and Gerben van Straaten, Earth Charter Affiliate, introduced the Earth Charter to the local community and explored how to implement it in cities.

A petition was circulated to call on local governments to endorse the core principles of (1) respect and care for the community of life; (2) ecological integrity; (3) social and economic justice; and (4) democracy, non-violence and peace.

Victoria Endorsement 3

The committee then presented the mayor and councillors with the petition and asked for their endorsement. It was a natural fit for the city, and they were supportive with two councillors choosing to work with Faith in Action through the rest of the democratic process.

With this endorsement, the City of Victoria joins a large number of other cities, communities and organizations around the world who are committed who embrace the spirit and aims of the Earth Charter.

Click here to read the official letter of endorsement of the City of Victoria, British Columbia.

 

 

Continue Reading

Celebrating the Environment Day 2017

In 2017, Earth Charter International Secretariat staff celebrated the World Environment Day (5 June) joining the activities of several partners in Costa Rica

Educacion estilos vida sostenible MINAE

The Ministry of Enviornment of Costa Rica organized a big public event, where thousands of people attended to learn about what are governmental and non governmental organizations doing on enviornment conservation.  During this event, Alicia Jimenez, staff member of the Earth Charter Secretariat offered a talk on 2 June, about education for sustainable lifestyles through an ethical perspective. Around 60 people attended this talk.

 

Bioetica Carta de la Tierra UTN

That same day, on 2 June, Mirian Vilela and Alicia Jimenez, ECI staff members, participated in a round table on bioethics and the Earth Charter, at the National Technical University of Costa Rica.  Around 150 students of this university attended this event, where participants reflected on the complementarities and synergies between UNESCO International Bioethics Declaration and the Earth  Charter.

Continue Reading

Earth Charter and sustainability actions in Mexico

The Earth Charter Network in Mexico continues to be very active, promoting endorsements and the use of this declaration at different levels, from Local Governments to private companies. Here are some highlights of this year:

STATE AND LOCAL GOVERNMENTS ENDORSEMENTS

The Congress of Oaxaca State formally endorsed the Earth Charter on 5 June, during the Environment Day celebration. One of the sponsors of this endorsement, Deputy Paola Gutiérrez Galindo, mentioned the importance of this endorsement to work harder on ecological protection, eradication of poverty, equitable economic development, respect for human rights, democracy and peace in the State of Oaxaca.  Find more information in this news article.

Inspired by the endorsement done by the State Government, the Municipality of Santa Cruz Xoxocotlán, Oaxaca also endorsed the Earth Charter in July. Find in this article more information about this city endorsement

We thank this Municipality for having created a nice video to share with the public the meaning of this endorsement:

Sta Maria Xoxocotlan

In Morelia, the capital city of Michoacan, the municipal authorities ratified the commitment to the city’s sustainable development by signing the Earth Charter in a ceremony in the City Hall, in the framework of the environment day celebration  (5th June). Mateo Castillo Ceja, member of the Earth Charter International Council, emphasized that the Earth Charter contains a series of guidelines that every public servant should adopt, as it favors the development of public policies that balance urban development with their surrounding environment.

This act strengthens these efforts as the Congress of the State of Michoacán de Ocampo approved a Legislative Decree Number 292 on the Reform of the Environmental Law for Sustainable Development of the State of Michoacán de Ocampo, which adds article 18 BIS where the Earth Charter is considered as part of the Global Ethical Framework for decision making.

More information in this article.

Aval Morelia Carta de la Tierra Mexico

HIGHER EDUCATION INSTITUTIONS ENDORSEMENTS

On 19 June, the International and Sustainable Bilingual Universities of Mexico signed the Earth Charter endorsement in a ceremony held at the headquarters of the Technological University of the Mexico Valley Metropolitan Area. This is a group of 22 universities, including Technological and Polytechnic Universities.

Aval Univ Tecnicas en Hidalgo

In addition, the Technological Institute of Morelia (ITM) endorsed the Earth Charter and the Global Action Programme on Education for Sustainable Development on 24 May, confirming its intention to use the Charter in the most appropriate way according to its context.

With this endorsement, ITM acquires the responsibility of working with top managers and all members of this education community in the implementation of the Charter’s principles.
More information on this article.

CIVIL SOCIETY ENDORSEMENTS

Many different civil society organizations or education institutions such as schools and high schools have endorsed the Earth Charter in Mexico. Here, we highlight two institutions who communicated with the Earth Charter International Secretariat their intention to endorse and use the Earth Charter in their work.

In Puebla, the organization “We are Nations” (Asociación Civil Somos Naciones) and Deca Nasser Civil Society Organization, endorsed the Earth Charter in a ceremony held on 25 April at the Paraninfo Hall of the Autonomous University of Puebla. These organizations work with refugees and migrants, supporting them in their transition to the new places where they will be established. Approximately 148 participants attended this ceremony, from Japan, Lebanon, France, Spain, Nigeria, Trinidad and Tobago, Peru and Brazil. In addition, the consuls of Japan, Armando Ono Nakamura and France, Dr. Ofelia Cervantes Villagómez participated. This endorsement was organized by the Earth Charter network focal point in Puebla, Mr. Ignacio Rojas.

In Zacatecas, the Rotary Club Guadalupe signed the endorsement of the Earth Charter through its president 2016-2017, Eng. Gustavo Dávila del Real, accompanied by members of the Club and some personalities including the soprano singer Sheila López, the professor Pedro Rodríguez, the Mayor Enrique Flores Mendoza. Ms. Sandra Mendoza, Earth Charter focal point in Zacatecas, organized this endorsement.

PUBLICATIONS

The Earth Charter in Yaqui:   The Cajeme Technological Institute (ITESCA) in Mexico, made it possible to have the Earth Charter translated into Yaqui, an indigenous language from Sonora, Northern Mexico.  The Yaquis are a small indigenous group, around 32,000 people, that live along the Yaqui River.

We deeply appreciate the efforts done by Dr. Martin Villa Ibarra, focal point of the Earth Charter Mexican network in Sonora, for his motivation and hard work with ITESCA staff to make this translation possible.   Find this translation here.

Carta de la Tierra Yaqui Mexico

Pet Star Company endorsed the Earth Charter some years ago, and several staff members received training to learn more in depth how to use it. Recently, they published their first Sustainability Report 2016, for which they used the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) – in its version G4- guidelines, the Earth Charter, The Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and The Global Compact Principles.

This Report corresponds to the actions carried out in 2016 and collects the results of the company’s social, economic and environmental performance.

You can download this report here:

Pet Star publicacion

 

A new publication called “The Implementation of Agenda 21 in Mexico: Critical Contributions to Sustainability” edited by the José María Luis Mora Research Institute is available in digital form. This book contains a chapter written by Lorena San Román that refers to the Earth Charter.

“At a time of renewed energy in the global narrative of sustainability, thanks to the political and media push of Rio + 20 summit in 2012 and the United Nations Organization’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs); it is worth asking what is the importance and lessons learned of the implementation of the main sustainability planning instruments, such as Agenda 21 (A21).”

You can find this book in this link:

Implementacion Agenda 21 Mexico Carta de la Tierra

Continue Reading

Earth Charter International co-sponsors Spirituality and Sustainability Conference in Italy

Assisi 3From 27 June to 4 July, a group of about 60 participants gathered in Rome and Assisi for the Spirituality and Sustainability Conference, convened by The Center for Ethics of Saint Thomas University in Florida and The Center for Earth Ethics at the Union Theological Seminary in New York.

Earth Charter International was among the many co-sponsors of this unique event. The programme involved diverse informal moments for participants to share and connect, as well as panel presentations and discussions on:

– Encyclical Laudato Si´

– Thomas Berry Vision, Saints Francis and Claire

– Ecological Spirituality and its Indigenous Roots

– The Great Transition: Earth Charter and Ecological Civilization

– Transformative Paths: Education and Policy Advocacy

At the Earth Charter panel, Marryssa Pallis, an Honors student majoring in Political Science at Florida Gulf Coast University, opened the discussion with a wonderful presentation on the various and continuous efforts of FGCU in bringing the Earth Charter over the years to various courses, programmes and research projects, engaging and inspiring the student community with its articulated ethical vision of sustainability.

Assisi 4Sofia van Winden, from the Soetendorp Institute for Human Values in The Netherlands shared her thoughts on the importance of ecocentric values and spirituality in international cooperation, which has been a largely anthropocentric field focused on economic growth. She raised the question of whether modern development models can respond adequately to current concerns and asserted that adequate responses require a thorough analysis of the values that underpin global development policies. She also discussed her involvement in organizing a task force on the Earth Charter and Inter-faith spirituality.

Song Li, member of Earth Charter Associates and an ECI Advisor, shared a reflection on the current Chinese model of development; this model was successful in getting many people out of poverty, but it caused many other problems for the environment and people´s health. She suggested that China requires strong efforts to improve social and environment conditions, and for that a change of people’s minds and hearts is essential. She emphasized that the Chinese cultural tradition is very rich in regards to the relationship between people and nature, as well as the importance of building on and reviving traditional values for the common good of humanity.

Tommy Short, member of the Earth Charter International Council, shared his assisi 1belief that sustainability should be considered a logical transition and that we all need to embrace a new sense of future looking at the impact of our actions in the long term. He stressed his ongoing commitment to the Earth Charter Initiative mission and the importance of engaging the private sector at all levels in this vision.

Mirian Vilela, ECI Secretariat Executive Director, who moderated the panel, offered an overview of the Earth Charter movement and highlighted the fact that many discussions that helped to polish the Earth Charter text took place in Assisi towards the end of the 90s, especially around the principle of compassion.

Assisi 2She stressed the importance of the notion of Earth Community that is articulated in the Earth Charter and that it is found in the thinking of St. Francis and Thomas Berry. She concluded with a reflection on Principle 2 of the Earth Charter that makes a call to care for the community of life, understanding, wisdom and largeness of heart is essential.

The Conference continued with a panel on Education where Professors Peter Blaze Corcoran and Maria Roca from FGCU shared their experience in bringing the Earth Charter vision to their university, teaching practice and research efforts.

The Planning Committee of the Conference involved Rev. Msgr. Terence E. Hogan, Rick Clugston, Elisabetta M. Ferrero, Joe Holland, and Arthur W. Kane.

You can also read the Blog from Maryssa Pallis on this at:

https://maryssatradingplaces.wordpress.com/blog/

Continue Reading

Developments on the “Global Pact for the Environment” and Its Overlap with the Earth Charter

pact 2 IUCNOn June 23, politicians, experts and jurists met to take part in a drafting committee to finalize the “Global Pact for the Environment,” which was publically presented the following day to an audience that included Ban Ki-moon, Arnold Schwarzennegger, Laurent Fabius, Zhang Xinsheng, and many others.

French President Emmanuel Macron closed the discussions, pledging to play an active role in the process and take the Pact to the UN General Assembly for consideration. It is meant to go alongside the 1966 United Nations Covenants on Economic, Social, and Cultural Rights and on Civil and Political Rights, providing a global reference instrument that could become part of the foundation of international environmental law.

This initiative is historic not only because of its environmental message, but because the Pact is intended to become a binding international treaty, unlike previous efforts such as the Rio Declaration of 1992, which had only declaratory impact.

Many of the principles in the Pact are familiar, i.e. the polluter pays principle and the precautionary principle. This is not surprising, as it builds on existing soft law documents like the Stockholm Declaration of the United Nations Conference` on the Human Environment, the World Charter for Nature, the Rio Declaration of the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development and the Earth Charter. One of the goals of the Pact is to create a unifying treaty that is specifically on environmental protection, bringing coherence to the hundreds of existing international treaties that deal with this topic. Meant to capitalize on the momentum of the 2015 Paris Agreement, the pact also would work in tandem with the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and its 17 Sustainable Development Goals. If successful, the Pact would be an enforceable treaty that could solidify many fundamental principles of conservation and sustainable development.

Justice Antonio Benjamin (Brazil), Professor Nicholas Robinson (U.S.A.), Professor Christina Voight (Norway), Professor Nilufer Oral (Turkey), and Dr. Parvez Hassan (Pakistan)

Justice Antonio Benjamin (Brazil), Professor Nicholas Robinson (U.S.A.), Professor Christina Voight (Norway), Professor Nilufer Oral (Turkey), and Dr. Parvez Hassan (Pakistan)

This process has been enriched with the outstanding participation of Professor Nick Robinson, Judge Antonio Herman Benjamin and Dr. Parvez Hassan, who have been spearheading the evolving efforts of international environmental law and in the IUCN World Commission of Environmental Law.  The three of them were also part of the drafting of the Earth Charter. Senior judges from multiple countries participated, marking the first time that judges have been part of the preparation of a treaty. Lord Robert Carnwath from the British Supreme Court, Luc Lavrysen of the Belgian Constitutional Court, and Swatanter Kumar, the Chairperson of the National Green Tribunal in India were all involved.

Although the Earth Charter is not focused solely on the environment, unlike the Global Pact for the Environment, ecological protection is still a major theme. The ecological integrity principles of the Charter can be seen in the articles of the new pact, along with the necessary inclusions for a future legal document. The Earth Charter is very specific in its ecological principles, calling for nature and biosphere reserves, endangered species recovery, the control of GMOs, the build-up of toxic substances, etc.

The Pact for the Environment faces a difficult road towards becoming an enforced treaty, and its articles are written with that consideration. It calls for necessary measures to prevent environmental harm and to ensure remediation of environmental damages, but without the specificities of the Earth Charter.

pact_coverIn addition to referencing issues of environmental concern such as biodiversity and Earth’s carrying capacity, the preamble to the new pact also touches on some of the broader social considerations that are part of the Earth Charter, such as gender equality and the role of women, the importance of education, and the rights of indigenous peoples. The drafters of the Pact integrated the message of the new Sustainable Development Goals – as true positive progress involves an integrated and global approach.

Since the Earth Charter was written as an ethical framework and not as an international treaty, it had more latitude to include unambiguous actions for environmental change. The drafters of the Global Pact for the Environment are hoping it will become a cornerstone of international environmental law, and wrote it as such. Consequently, its ecological goals are broader and more general than many of the Earth Charter principles, and accompanied by crucial considerations for its future. Regardless of their phrasing, there is no doubt that if the Global Pact can keep its core goals through the process towards implementation, many of the Earth Charter principles will be much closer to being fulfilled and it will become a milestone in the global environment governance efforts.

(Article by: Lorna Battista)

Continue Reading on the Global Pact for the Environment:

https://www.iucn.org/commissions/world-commission-environmental-law/events/23-24-june-2017-global-pact-environment-introduced-world 

http://legal-planet.org/2017/06/27/france-pushes-for-global-pact-on-the-environment/

http://www.reuters.com/article/us-world-climatechange-macron-idUSKBN19F0LG

http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/us-politics/trump-macron-arnold-schwarzeneggar-climate-change-make-planet-great-again-a7806491.html

Continue Reading

Master’s Degree in Environmental Management with emphasis on Sustainable Development

U La Salle 2The University De La Salle and Earth Charter International in Costa Rica are jointly offering the Master’s Degree in Environmental Management and Sustainable Development, with the conviction of promoting leadership among professionals who decide to access this postgraduate programme and acquire the necessary skills for the efficient and adequate management of natural resources, grounding this knowledge in environmental management and the need for technical and operational transformation of organizations.U La Salle 1

This Master’s Degree programme is based on the holistic vision of the Earth Charter, and has the institutional support of the Earth Charter International Secretariat. In this sense, the graduates of this Master’s Degree will be able to access and be involved in the global network of The Earth Charter.

The classes will begin on September 9, 2017, at the headquarters of University De La Salle in Sabana Sur, San José, Costa Rica.

For more information on this programme go to: http://www.gestionambientalulasalle.com/

Continue Reading

Conclusion of the Online Certificate Programme on Education for Sustainable Development 2017

Diplomado ENG for UPEACE“This ESD diploma and its great content has shifted my look at many topics and changed my teaching experience so far. Before I used to concentrate more on knowledge and data, now I go beyond. I see the links between knowledge, ethics and values more clearly”.   – Nehal L. Khalil, PhD (Egypt).

We are grateful to have successfully concluded the “Online Certificate Programme on Education for Sustainable Development”, offered jointly by the Earth Charter Center for ESD and the University for Peace.

This unique programme is designed to provide participants with the understanding, knowledge, and skills to integrate Education for Sustainable Development and Education for Global Citizenship into classrooms, schools, and curricula with depth and creativity. Unlike most programmes in sustainability, in these courses the Earth Charter (EC) is used as a central feature of this approach. The EC provides a broad, inclusive and powerful values-based orientation that can be infused within the missions and purposes of most educational programmes. Instructionally, the methodologies introduced are ones that can be applied to all learning across the curriculum and across grade levels.

This Programme started on 17 January and finished on 20 June 2017.  Twenty participants from fifteen different countries, representing all regions of the world, successfully finished this Programme.

The Programme has four courses, which are:Pic Seminar 2

  1. A Planetary Perspective: Toward a Culture of Peace, Sustainability, and Well-Being – Facilitators: Lorna Down and Rosalyn McKeown
  1. Values and Principles for Sustainability: The Earth Charter as an Ethical Framework and a Call to Action – Facilitators: Mirian Vilela and Alicia Jimenez
  1. Transformative Learning and ESD: A Holistic Pedagogy Grounded in the Neurosciences – Facilitator: Sam Crowell
  1. The Way Forward: Models and Skills for Implementing ESD with the Earth Charter – Facilitator: Mark Hathaway

We look forward to start a new Online Certificate Programme on ESD in 2018! 

If you are interested, please visit this page:  http://earthcharter.org/events/online-certificate-education-sustainable-development-2018/   or contact apply@earthcharter.org to receive information.

 

Continue Reading

Education for Sustainable Development Public Policy Course with UNESCO

Education Sustainable Development Public Policy

From 13 to 15 June, the “Hybrid Course on Design and Formulation of Education for Sustainable Development Public Policies” was launched, organized by UNESCO San Jose and the Earth Charter Center for Education for Sustainable Development. This course is taking place using a hybrid mode, consisting of 36 face to face hours and 30 virtual hours. The beginning of the course took place at the Earth Charter Center for Education for Sustainable Development facilities in the University for Peace, San Jose – Costa Rica. The course will continue until 8 August 2017.

A total of 25 officials from Ministries of 20170615_171134Education and Environment from each country of the Central American Integration System (SICA), committed themselves to this training. The call for participation was made by UNESCO, with the support of CECC SICA.

During the first face-to-face phase, senior officials deepened their knowledge of sustainable development from a systemic perspective, on the concept of education for sustainable development, and on what are the basic elements of public policies on education for sustainable development.

IMG_6843Mirian Vilela and Alicia Jiménez, who are part of the staff of the Earth Charter Center for EDS, coordinate the course, and facilitators who collaborate include Alejandrina Mata and Rafael Luna. During this first part of the course, a wide variety of exhibitors were invited; from young high-school students to the Deputy Minister of Public Education of Costa Rica, who presented their perspectives on education and sustainability. 20170614_155128

 

It was possible to appreciate the real efforts that each participating country is making towards the fulfillment of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), and the implementation of Education for Sustainable Development in the curriculum. A paradigm shift of the education system in the region is envisioned, where interrelated educational agendas such as on Education for Sustainable Development, Climate Change, and SDGs are implemented in an coherent and integrated manner.

Foto Grupal Miercoles 14 junio

 

Continue Reading

Read the Earth Charter

We stand at a critical moment in Earth's history, a time when humanity must choose its future.
Download the Charter